The name of Mercedes-Benz is synonymous with the heritage of the motorcar, and the company has over the decades produced some of the finest examples of sporting machinery. Early forays into the competition world led to the production of some of the fastest touring cars of their day and an involvement with technical development that was unsurpassed. The post-war years saw the continued development associated with the Mercedes-Benz name, and, with the reintroduction of sports cars into the range, in 1952 the legendary 300 SL was born – a year in which it proved itself victorious at LeMans. First produced as a fixed-head coupe with gullwing doors, the 215 bhp, fuel-injected, dry sump engine provided the car with a ready following. The later development of a roadster on the spaceframe chassis offered an open alternative to the gullwing coupe, and was unrivalled at a time when there was nothing else available on the market with the same exhilarating performance, engineering excellence and purposeful elegance.
The splendid example pictured above left the Mercedes-Benz works in 1959 and was first supplied to the renowned Baron Heini von Thyssen in Los Angeles. The car was ordered with, and still retains, the desirable factory fitted luggage and Becker radio.
In 1984/85, substantial servicing and mechanical work was carried out by Gullwing Services, without a doubt one of the world’s most respected 300SL specialists. There is some paperwork available confirming the work completed.
In 1987 the car was imported into the United Kingdom and was later bought by entrepreneur Peter de Savary, residing in his Littlecote Collection for several years. In 1992 it was sold to its present owner. Before purchase a detailed inspection was carried out by 300SL expert Ron Waghorn, Service Manager for Mercedes-Benz dealer Rose & Young (Caterham) Ltd. The report indicated some minor recommended work, most of which has been subsequently completed. There are bills available amounting to $4,150 for these repairs.
The car is finished in Fire Engine Red with beige interior and comes complete with a US title, an owner’s manual, an original parts catalogue and a workshop manual.